Dalai Lama denied visa to SA for a third time
Cape Town - For a third time in five years the Dalai Lama has been denied a visa to South Africa, reports said on Thursday.
He had been invited to attend the 14th World Summit of Nobel Peace Laureates next month, for the first time being held in Cape Town, the Cape Times reported.
The summit is being arranged by a local organising committee formed by the foundations representing the four South African laureates, Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu, Nelson Mandela, FW de Klerk and Albert Luthuli.
The Dalai Lama’s representative in South Africa says the international relations and co-operations department had contacted her in the past week to say he would not be granted a visa.
And in a new twist, other Nobel Peace Laureates say they will also not attend the summit if the Dalai Lama is denied entry into the country.
But FW De Klerk’s foundation says the laureates should attend and protest there.
It is widely believed that the reason the Dalai Lama has been denied visas to the country is because of South Africa’s relations with China.
When asked by News24 for comment, the international relations spokesperson, Nelson Kgwete, refused to speak on the matter and said all statements would come from the department’s top spokesperson, Clayson Monyela.
Monyela is on business in China.
In February, the Chinese government reacted in anger as US President Barack Obama ignored their request to not meet with the exiled Tibetan leader.
In April, Norwegian authorities were left torn between a planned visit by the Dalai Lama to Oslo and warming up its chilly ties with China, AFP reported.